Old Bus Tickets

Yorkshire Woollen District Transport – Ultimate

YWD Ultimate

The last of my Yorkshire Woollen District tickets normal Ultimate tickets were used for the local routes in Dewsbury and the other Woollen District towns with heavier loadings and lower fares. Here is a selection of them note the 3½d ticket bottom left is of a different design all of them were printed by Bell Punch London.

Photograph and Copy contributed by John Stringer

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14/03/12 – 07:04

The Ultimate tickets reminded me that my wife was a clippie at Frost Hill depot and she used this machine on Service G [The Track] Dewsbury to Cleckheaton and Service F [Batley to Birkenshaw. She recalls that a certain member of staff who will be nameless used to pick up clean tickets from the floor and sell them again. This individual later became an inspector.

Philip Carlton

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22/03/12 – 13:50

This type of tickets were also issued by Darlington Corporation Transport, I worked for them back in the early seventies on one man routes, ticket machine as I recall was quite large with several rolls of different priced single tickets, to obtain the correct fare you sometimes had to issue two tickets of different prices I think they were all in old money 240d (pence to the pound) this made your brain work when a family of four or more got on the bus and adult and child fares had to be calculated.
Happy Memories.

Tony Swanston

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24/03/12 – 18:23

Tony, was this by any chance the dreaded "Solomatic" – enormous big brother for OPO of the conductors’ "Ultimate" ? If so you have my deepest sympathy, as I suffered with the infernal things for years at Leeds City Transport. In order to avoid the expense of holding two different stocks of tickets Leeds used "Ultimate" rolls in these big machines. Cinema style "concertina" tickets were supposed to be used, where of course the machine had no weight to lift as the tickets were issued. With the heavy ticket rolls the machine sprocket would endlessly rip the tickets open vertically – especially when issuing "doubles" – causing delay and frustration.

Chris Youhill

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27/03/12 – 07:29

Thanks Chris, You have answered a long standing question as to why those blasted ticket machines never seemed to work properly and you often ended up with ripped or partial tickets, I can remember having to issue doubles quite often and the frustration of having to renew ticket rolls part way through a long queue of boarding passengers. I eventually went to United who used motorised Setright machines much easier to operate, longer routes, faster buses and views of the surrounding countryside as a bonus.

Tony Swanston

Yorkshire Woollen District Transport – Setright Speed

YWD Setright Speed

Here is the Setright Speed version of the Yorkshire Woollen District bus tickets they had superseded the Automacheckit/Bellgraphics by the 1960′s. This type had the company name on the back – in a similar fashion to West Yorkshire Road Car and a small number of other companies, but when decimalisation came in they joined the mainstream and the name was printed along the front edges in the more usual style.

Photograph and Copy contributed by John Stringer

Yorkshire Woollen District Transport – Automacheckit

YWD Auto
Slightly reduced to fit the page.

This is the first of three postings for Yorkshire Woollen District that I am going to post.

There was Four Yorkshire Woollen District services that passed our house and I often used to board their buses if the chance arose. Getting the crews to let you off again was the biggest hurdle, especially if you were a young child, as many objected strongly to carrying local passengers in the Halifax area – even though they were supposed to do.
The services were 23 (Halifax – Leeds Direct via the A58), 24 (Halifax – Leeds via Cleckheaton) and 29 (Halifax – Batley) – all double-deck operated, and the 40 (Halifax – Cleckheaton via Wyke) worked jointly with Hebble using single deckers.
In the 1950′s Y.W.D. used Bellgraphic/Automacheckit tickets, but by the 1960′s Setright Speed machines were mostly the norm – though they must have retained a few – like Hebble – or I would not have had this one in my possession now. Local services in the Dewsbury and Woollen District towns mostly used Ultimates, so you know what my next two postings are going to be.

Photograph and Copy contributed by John Stringer

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07/03/12 – 10:08

A most interesting posting, and the four grids are fascinating too, as the conductor was seemingly obliged to write a large "C" for "child" across the left hand pair. A personal spin off for me – I was away in the RAF in 1955, but on leave I discovered to my excitement that Samuel Ledgard (who I intended to work for and did once Her Majesty had released me) was trialling the Setright Speed machine with a view to replacing the bulky and expensive stocks of Bell Punch and Willebrew tickets. The trial machines were on loan from Yorkshire Woollen and had very low operator serial numbers, for example YO1 YO2 etc.

Chris Youhill

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07/03/12 – 15:20

Just a little useless trivia here, but I notice that the serial number of the threepenny child ticket is "HD" – a very appropriate but admittedly insignificant coincidence as that was (prior to local government reorganisation in 1974) the Dewsbury registration mark for many generations of "Yorkshire Woollen" buses.

Chris Youhill

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08/03/12 – 14:25

The mention of the reluctance of carrying passengers in the Halifax area reminds me of when I was a conductor at Beck Lane depot Heckmondwike and most drivers never stopped after Hipperholme Cross Roads aiming for a pot of tea in Halifax Bus Station. One Saturday I was on service 29 which on Saturdays was extended from its normal terminus at Scholes. My driver an English Gentleman of the old school stopped at every stop into Halifax and when I queried this with him he told me that he remembered a driver was once fined ten shillings by the Traffic Commissioners for not stopping for people. The drivers name was Alf Carly. Can anybody remember him?

Philip Carlton

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10/03/12 – 08:57

The reluctance of YWD crews to carry Halifax local passengers was a long standing thing. My late father often recounted how back in the 1930′s when attempting to travel from Stump Cross to Halifax on his way to school, the local Corporation and JOC buses would sometimes pass by full, and everyone then relied on Hebble and YWD services which were more lightly loaded. Would-be passengers would walk right out into the road, arms outstretched, but the YWD buses – at the time Leyland Tiger TS single deckers – would usually just veer out round them, even on to the opposite side of the road if necessary. One day a friend of his managed to stop one briefly. The bus had the usual vestibule front entrance with a couple of steps then a hinged door at the top. He started to clamber aboard, the driver set off again, and the conductor rushed to the front and held the door firmly shut. The hapless bloke – unable now to get off safely – had to travel all the way to town hanging on to the handrail desperately trying not to be thrown off into the road. To add insult to injury, on arrival in town the conductor jumped off, pinned him against the side of the bus and made him pay his fare !

John Stringer